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my story of the stones…

The rain and the wind added to the insistence of the surf. The waves initiated far out beyond the horizon, churning, rising, swirling… counting one, two, three… and by the seventh count the force of sea-energy crashed hard upon the pebbled beach. The long slow draw of wash as the waves flowed down the shoreline, dragging the stones with them. With each cycle of the unrelenting roar, waves crashing upon the stones, down through the sand and debris and back out to an unknown depth, the rhythm drew me into a trance. Mesmerized by the sight, the sound and the suspension of all thoughts, I was drawn into the cleansing motion of the tidal shore, with the power of the sea responding, replenishing and washing anew over and over again.

the wash of the beach

I had come to be by the sea after a long and exhausting journey to a new beginning. With the wind whipping at my hair, sea foam thrown up by the crashing waves washing my face from the gusts that sheared off the crest of those waves, I thrilled in the moment! The power of nature’s awe! Feeling her strength, standing firm, allowing the forces to pull around me, to envelope me, to absorb me. To include me as if I had always been there, standing firm and solid in time, the wind swirling to embrace me, the ocean reaching to wash over me. Like an abrasive cloth the surge drew down deep and slowly washing the darkness, the heaviness that had filled my heart, and the rhythm of the tidal cleansing easing my thoughts …

The sun peaked out from the heavy skies and flooded the grey seascape before me with an explosion of warmth and colour drenched in the scent of the sea. As I looked down upon the sand at my feet, glimmers of glass-like pebbles sparkled in the momentary gift of sunlight and I reached down to allow the stones to pick me …

Selecting three… three glossy, wet stones, black as the deepest night, smoothed and rounded by the unrelenting shaping of the waves. Three, they fit comfortingly and welcoming in the palm of my hand… cold to the touch but refreshing, warming to the heart.

black stones

As I closed my hand around them I felt the pull of the sea flow through me, relaxing my shoulders, warming my neck and easing the tension felt in my eyes. I gave in to the stones, as I gave back the warmth of my mind, my soul, my heart…

They had chosen me… and I cradled them in my hand, marvelling at their feel, the smoothness of their surface, the depth of the colour and their markings of the journey they must have taken to become these tiny stones nestled in my hands. The longer I held them they became warm to the touch, drawing down the darkness from inside, out and away from me, washing anew again, like the tidal movement along the shore.

cupping the stones in my hand

They had chosen me… I placed them in my pocket. I carry the stones with me to remind me of where I need to be when when I need to clear my thoughts and begin anew… and now, I share their story, and their presence with you…

‘holding the stones in your hands, open your mind to curiosity, fill your heart with your passion and offer expression with your hands’…

three stone soup ingredients!

three stone soup… is about creating community through expression in fibre, heart and story


Wendy has spent twenty-five years in technology and adult learning, and seven years working with Indigenous communities in developing educational capacity, providing leadership, training and mentorship through an de-institutional approach to learning. Prior to this, Wendy worked in textile and mixed-media arts giving creative expression through colour, texture and imagery. By engaging head, heart and hands in this creative process Wendy discovered the role that curiosity and exploration brings to the passion for self-driven learning. In bringing her past and present together Wendy challenges conventional ways of learning, engaging those who have been dis-engaged and inciting curiosity as a catalyst for self-driven learning.

Wendy has an MA in Interdisciplinary Studies, focusing on capacity building and de-institutionalized approaches to learning. She co-authored, with her husband Gregory Cran, “Engaging Canadian First Nations Youth in E-learning for Peace” in Learning to Live Together: Using Distance Education for Community Peacebuilding published by Commonwealth of Learning Press and “Creating a Learning Community using a De-centralized Approach to Learning”.  (Ed. by Greg Williams) Talking Back, Talking Forward: Journeys in Transforming Indigenous Educational Practice. Charles Darwin University Press.